Skip links

Main navigation

Bodum Bistro Toaster Review – Red Hot Toast

Bodum Toaster
Since they first made a splash a couple of years ago, we’ve been intrigued by Bodum’s new line of bistro products. Between their clean contemporary design, and their availability in that particular crimson that sparks both our appetite and avarice—the whole range hit us squarely in our sweet-spot.
But it also triggered our suspicions and piqued our too-pretty prejudice. Would they actually work? Would that striking rubberized coating gunge up or peel off? And, which of them might we need and use often?
After waiting to see if they lit anyone’s house on fire—they haven’t—we finally indulged ourselves and ordered the Bodum Bistro Toaster.

Bodum Bistro Toaster
Ah toast. A simple and ridiculous pleasure. And the Bistro toaster? A pleasure to use.
Not for Texas-toast, not toasting eight slices at once, and without extra-wide slots or an LCD display—it’s a no-nonsense example of pure design, where form, however striking, is wholly at service to good operation. Perhaps this is unsurprising for a Bodum product. Bodum is a ‘Danish born, Swiss based company with ‘corporate social responsibility in its DNA.’ Bodum’s French Press has become a ubiquitous classic.
In person, the toaster feels larger than it appears. It’s wide and assertive on the counter—though an integrated cord-wrap at the base make it easy to tuck away. We expect that its size helps it to diffuse heat, and it lends the light-weight product a good deal of stability.
We love the look and feel of the rubbery grip. It stays relatively cool during operation, a boon for clumsy-first-thing-in-the-morning fingers, and is easier to keep clean than stainless steel. The colouring and matte texture of the product really are an aesthetic delight, an unusual relief from glossy kitchen surfaces.

Of course, the slot assembly is shiny chrome. The toaster features two slots, neither designated as a ‘master.’ Slots are clearly sized for a standard loaf of bread. They accommodate our home-made, or loafs purchased from our local baker perfectly—but I suspect they may be too shallow for some commercial mega-breads. They will accommodate a bagel, but the toaster does not have a bagel function, and always runs the elements on both sides. Instead, the toaster features a ‘warming rack.’ A slide at the top of the toaster lifts two arms which allow you to grill bagels bistro-style over the toaster’s opening. This works well for that purpose, and is also useful in warming pastries such as croissants or cornetti.

The controls on the toaster are an unexpected joy. A simple radial control sets brownness. The dial operates smoothly—but more importantly, with thirty seconds between rounds it produces very consistent results. More novel is the presence of a straightforward pair of buttons, one to trigger a defrost setting. The other is a press button eject that neither launches toast to the ceiling, nor sticks and struggles against use. Should you lose a bit of bread or too much crumb into the abyss, the catch tray pulls out neatly and easily from the side of the toaster and slides right back in.

It all adds up to great toast. Short of trying to, we haven’t burnt a slice.
In the possible way, this toaster reminds us of Zojirushi’s beguiling Zutto line of products, where a clearly minimalist eye has generated some maximum design. Made in China, but with a two year warranty, it’s not fancy. It’s pragmatic—and a little bit perfect. At least for our use.

What do you think of the Bodum Bistro Toaster?

Reader Interactions